Sunday, June 16, 2024

The Cambridge City Council’s seventh ballot for mayor came and went Monday without the five votes needed for an election.

No candidate has won more than three since voting began at the council’s inaugural meeting Jan. 2, with Leland Cheung keeping his base (himself, Denise Simmons and Minka vanBeuzekom) and Marjorie Decker hanging onto David Maher, whose mayoral term over the past two years was made by possible by Decker’s vote in late February 2010, when balloting threatened to go into a third month.

“There is a time in which you have to look at how to move forward,” Decker said at the time. “It does get to a point where, [since] we were elected to create public policy for the people of Cambridge … We have to ask ourselves: If there is no mayor, and there are no committee assignments for us to chair, then what is the City Council doing? We cannot effectively advocate for public policy.”

This time around, the balloting has been faster; there were three ballots last Monday. But Cheung’s hopes there would be an eighth ballot on Monday were shut down 4-4 — Henrietta Davis, Maher, Simmons and Toomey were opposed, while Cheung, Decker, Reeves and vanBeuzekom supported one. It was Maher’s request that balloting stop after the seventh, and he won out.

With Craig Kelley missing, as he said he would be at the previous Monday meeting, the major shift of the night was that Toomey voted for Maher to be mayor again. He’d been voting for himself, with no joiners.